When wine tasting rooms first appeared in San Francisco, the idea was to bring oenophiles in the door to showcase the bounty of Bay Area wines when there’s not enough time to travel to wine country. We’ve listed urban wine tasting rooms that are widely known, as well as not-to-miss classics and up-and-coming spots.
Note: Covid-19 protocol and San Francisco law requires IDs and proof of vaccination.
Featured Photo: Maritime Wine Tasting Studio
485 Jefferson St., San Francisco
Wines: Boutique California wines in a popular location
Why Visit: Right inside the Argonaut Hotel at Fisherman’s Wharf, the focus is on boutique wines from smaller growers and brands. New releases and a rotating collection allows guests to sample wines sourced up and down the California coast from Napa Valley to Santa Barbara. Have a seat at the bar and learn about the wines from the host. Purchase favorites to take or to ship home. Open Sunday through Friday 1pm – 9 pm, Saturday 12pm – 9pm. Reserve ahead or walk in. winerycollective.com
Maritime Wine Tasting Studio
222 Columbus Ave. San Francisco
Wines: A family-owned winery features international brands from family-owned wineries
Why Visit: On the steps of North Beach across from City Lights Bookstore, this wine tasting spot has a cozy, historic interior with a maritime theme. Comfortable bi-level seating includes high top tables and stools, sofas and a long bar. Order olives and nibbles to enjoy with wine, served at your table from the cafe next door. Guests are surrounded by shelves with 200-plus bottles of wine on display for sampling or to purchase. Open Wednesday through Friday 5pm – 9pm and Saturday 1pm – 5pm. Closed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. maritimetasting.com
Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant & Wine Bar
One Ferry Building, Store #23, San Francisco
Wines: International quality wines of distinction
Why Visit: Inside the iconic Ferry Building, this is one of San Francisco’s best known places to sample wines from smaller producers from all over the world. Wines have been curated by knowledgeable wine buyer staff, grouped by country on display around the tasting room. Lovely snacks to pair with wines include olives, marcona almonds, caviar, fresh bread and California olive oil, chocolate covered cherries or figs. Small and large plates of charcuterie, mezze, burrata and prosciutto, cheeses, and smoked salmon are also available. Open weekdays 12pm – 7pm and weekends 11am – 7pm. Patio seating is available Wednesday through Sunday when the weather allows. fpwm.com
2800 California Street, San Francisco
Wines: Best wine bar awards and Wine Spectator Award of Excellence.
Why Visit: Near Pacific Heights, this small, convivial neighborhood wine bar has a dedicated following for its full kitchen serving good food, the oyster-fueled happy hours, and live jazz five days a week. Note the best burger awards and a bottomless brunch served on weekends. Tables and chairs are mixed with sofas beside picture windows for a living room feel and heat lamps under big umbrellas warm up the outdoor seating. The owner is the wine buyer and knows his stuff, winning the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence in 2021 for the fourth consecutive year. Open weekdays 3pm – 9pm and weekends 11am – 9pm. scopodivino.com
California Wine Merchant
2113 Chestnut St., San Francisco
Wines: Wine is served in Riedel stemware, order half glass, full glass or by the bottle.
Why Visit: Another neighborhood, another wine bar…this time on Chestnut Street, along a popular stretch (right next to the Apple Store) in the Marina District. It’s a wine bar, a wine shop, and a wine club all in one. Founded by the current owner in 1974, this long standing favorite specializes in small California wine producers. There are also new discoveries from Oregon and Washington as well as a well-curated selection of international labels. Bubbles, too. Order cheese, salami, or hummus plates plus fresh ciabatta, pistachios, Kalamata olives. Open daily 1pm – 10pm and until midnight on Friday and Saturday. californiawinemerchant.com
JCB Tasting Lounge
600 Stockton St., San Francisco
Wines: Signature selections from Jean-Charles Boisset poured into Baccarat crystal
Why Visit: Tucked off the lobby at the luxury Ritz-Carlton Hotel, this jewel box is an intimate tasting room for the JCB Collection of signature wines and sparkling wines. A plush, decadent and mirrored space is adorned with a chandelier, velvet, black lacquer and gilt. Wine tasting experiences and flights of limited production wines are priced individually and may be accompanied by a Regiis Ova Caviar pairing or a locally sourced cheese and charcuterie selection prepared by the hotel’s executive chef. Open Thursday through Monday from 2pm – 7pm. Closed Tuesday and Wednesday. jcbcollection.com/location/jcb-tasting-salon-sf
443 Clement Street, San Francisco
Wines: An up-and-coming neighborhood spot, wines are curated by master sommeliers.
Why Visit: Established in 2016 amid the Clement Street lineup of pan-Asian eateries and old-time Irish pubs, this neighborhood bar and bottle shop was founded by a handful of sommeliers and wine experts. While the laid back space at High Treason is informal, guests can sample rotating fine wines while enjoying snacks and an awesome vinyl playlist. Walk-ins welcome, no reservations. Open Sunday, Monday and Wednesday 4pm – 10pm and Thursday, Friday and Saturday 4pm – 11pm. Closed Tuesday. hightreasonsf.com
JAX Vineyards Tasting Room
326 Brannan St., San Francisco
Wines: Wines from a brother-sister Napa Winery in Calistoga.
Why Visit: Only 6 minutes’ walk from Oracle Park, this is an up-and-coming urban oasis in the South Beach corner of SoMa. The selection focuses on red wines from the JAX estate, including a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Cabernet Franc. Wine tasting guests can learn about the JAX portfolio while sampling Napa wines around the outdoor fire pit at the (dog-friendly) patio. Much of the space is outdoors in a wine country atmosphere of olive trees and strings of twinkling lights. Order the cheese and charcuterie platter to accompany wines. Guests can take home a few bottles of their favorite wines, too. Open Thursday, Friday and Saturday 4pm – 8pm. Closed Sunday through Wednesday. jaxvineyards.com/san-francisco-tasting-room
Treasure Island Wines
995 9th St., Treasure Island, San Francisco
Wines: Sip 15 wines from four wineries and see the production facilities
Why Visit: Named for the man made island in San Francisco Bay between San Francisco and Oakland where the wine tasting room is located, Treasure Wines is worth a detour. Just a few minutes from Downtown San Francisco, this up-and-coming spot is truly a hidden Bay Area gem. Try Rose of Syrah, Carignane, Petite Sirah, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay. Apply the tasting room fees toward a wine purchase to take home and have a look around at the crushpad and production, too. Open Saturday and Sunday 1pm – 5pm. Closed weekdays. tiwines.net